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5 Tips for Marketing Your Business Online; to Get the Biggest ROI

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5 Tips for Marketing Your Business Online; to Get the Biggest ROI

By smallbiztrends, Guest Blogger
Published: July 15, 2010

Online marketing is taking up an increasing share of the budgets of small businesses. Ther;s no mystery behind it: online is where customers are gravitating. So if you want to attract customers, and serve existing customers with new products and services, you too need to be placing an increasing proportion of your marketing budget online.

But in a small business i-s important to spend wisely, because our resources and budgets are limited. You want to focus on techniques that consistently deliver a powerful return on investment (ROI), as the following 5 techniques do:

(1) Commit to regular email marketing -- Email is a top online strategy for small businesses- especially among businesses that are not satisfied with the status quo, but want to grow. For instance, in one survey 82% of small businesses that currently use or plan to use email marketing, expected revenue growth.* Yo'll want to build a house email list consisting of those who opt in (elect to receive communications from you). That list is like gold because it consists of people who have shown interest already in your products and services' and who WANT to hear from you again. For more information, check out the article here at Business.gov on: Getting Started with Email Marketing.

(2) Start a blog or renew your efforts with your existing blog' A blog offers so many benefits' here are just a few: It helps your business get found by search engines, because of the great content you provide. It helps you engage more effectively with existing customers and new prospects' blogs are conversational and help you develop a closer bond than with static websites. And a blog also gives you the opportunity to tell the world more about what you do, how you do it, and how your business is different. For detailed pointers, read: Thinking of Starting a Blog? Tips to Help You Start, Maintain & Grow a Small Business Blog!

(3) Leverage other' blogs' Not sure you can commit to writing regularly in a blog? Or perhaps you have a blog, but are looking for additional ways to promote your business? If you like to write, then guest posting on other blogs is a no-cost (other than your time) way to spread the word about your business. And at the very least, you can comment on other' blogs, and participate that way. For more about guest posting, read: How to Guest Post to Promote Your Blog.*

(4) Advertise cost effectively with pay per click advertising - Pay-per-click advertising (such as Google AdWords) is a technique that literally can pay for itself. You pay only for clicks back to your website, meaning that you only pay for people who see your ad and click through to your site. That way you know you are paying for qualified traffic, i.e., those who have seen your ads and have some interest in whatever you're advertising. However, programs like Google AdWords require some knowledge if you want to maximize your return; otherwise, you could end up wasting money. And remember, if you feel Google AdWords may require too much time and attention, you can always outsource the management of your PPC ad programs to a professional. To get started, read: Google AdWords Explained - Growing Your Small Business with this Cost Effective Marketing Tool.

(5) Jump on the social media bandwagon - Think of social media like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Bizsugar.com and the like as being a way to amplify and spread your message. The Web is increasingly becoming a social place. Consumers and businesspeople increasingly share information, product recommendations, and content that they like. Wouldn't you like to encourage and make it easy for others to share your content or recommendations about your products/services? That's where playing in the social media sandbox can help. For more information, please check out: Getting Started with Social Media Marketing. You may also find this article of interest: Adding Social Media to the Business Marketing Mix - No Longer a Question of 'Why?' but 'How?'

For more information about online marketing, please also check out the videos that the SBA just produced in partnership with Google.

So, what are you waiting for? Jump on these 5 techniques and you'll be able to craft a cost-effective marketing strategy that is in sync with today's customers' behavior.

*Note: Hyperlink directs reader to non-government Web site.

* * * * *

Anita Campbell is the Founder of Small Business Trends*, an online publication and community serving small businesses.

About the Author:

Anita Campbell

Guest Blogger

My name is Anita Campbell. I run online communities and information websites reaching over 6 million small business owners, stakeholders and entrepreneurs annually, including Small Business Trends, a daily publication about small business issues, and BizSugar.com, a small business social media site.

Comments:

Online Marketing is more difficult than off line marketing. In both way of marketing, one thing is common and it the idea. Idea means the new things that works and converted into the positive results. SEO is one method that used in online marketing. SEO concerns with the organic search results on search engine. Once we got top position in search engine like Google, it becomes easy to get traffic and huge ROI. So do you think, this is easy? eCommerce Web Solution ---This post was edited to remove a commercial link. Read our discussion policies for more Community best practices.
I agree, SEO is an important part of the internet marketing mix. There's a bigger chance that the people who are looking for your particular product or service will see your site when you're right on top of the Search engine results pages (SERPs).
Great article. Internet Marketing is very important, but if you are a small business it all depends on your marketing budget. Internet Marketing, is no different then any other form of marketing, it is trackable and measurable thats true, but what if you do not go into the right direction, and market to the right type of people? First, you must know your business very well, and must have a targeted goal in mind. I say the best way to start, just simply to figure out where you stand is to go into Google Pay Per Click, with a small to medium size budget, $100 - $200 per day. Test it out for 1-2 weeks, increase or decrease the budget based on results, and go for another 3 weeks. After a month of testing, you can see the keywords people search for, you can see the trends and then from there you can expand and go into other aspects of internet marketing such as; email marketing social media marketing search engine optimizaton search engine marketing affiliate marketing lead generation...etc All will come with time. ---This post was edited to remove a commercial link. Read our discussion policies for more Community best practices.
Great post Anita.  I appreciate Justin's and Brittle's comments and suggestions, too. I've been doing #3 for a long time, while I build out my own. Thanks.
Wow, this was great advice. I just started my online business. And this is exactly what I have been looking for.
Wow, this blog is really great for starter online marketer like me. It helps me alot..Keep up the good work. Romel Trucking jobs ---This post was edited to remove a commercial link. Read our discussion policies for more Community best practices.
Of those 5 internet strategies, the email marketing has the absolute best ROI. However, it's getting harder and harder to get people to type in their email address obviously due to spam and the fact that many don't trust that you won't sell their email address to third parties. So first and foremost, you have to give the person a reason to volunteer their email address in the first place. Usually the promise of getting some random boring newsletter isn't going to cut it; in some cases you may have to resort to bribery lol. A bribe could be something along the lines of being entered into a drawing to win something or teasing them with some really, really, really good info. and telling them they have to sign up to learn more or get the rest of the info., something along those lines to get them to sign up. Secondly, it's always good to have the mention somewhere near where they opt-in assuring them that their email address will NOT be sold to a third-party.
I was a bit surprised to find email marketing as the number one method for marketing your business online! I thought Google adwords would be the most effective. However, given the rising cost of pay per click advertising, I can now see that email marketing can be a very cost effective method of marketing online. The problem with email marketing, in my humble opinion is it is very permission based and difficult to get started initially. Daniel Tetreault. 
All these five points ar not unique but still if we seriously follow all these five points and pratically implement it there will be boost in online marketing also thanks for nice video.
Anita's adviceis always spot on! So many entrepreneurs still think in terms of brick and mortar companies, but the overwhelming trend is for online businesses. Online IS the future, and it is here now, for very nearly every kind of business. You can't get a cavity filled online, but you can make appointments with the dentist, and you can get the dentist's recommendation for toothpaste, etc., and buy those online, as well as get extensive specialized information on all forms of tooth and gum disease. The same holds true for nearly every type of business. And Anita is so right: once you are online, learning to market that online presence can indeed make or break a company.

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